November 20, 2009

The 9 Stages Dads Go Through When Buying a Minivan

In high school, most Dudes plan to grow up to be Independent Men. That's why we all take the Man's Hippocratic Oath: To ethically and responsibly uphold the laws of manhood throughout our lives. We pledge to live by certain principles, which are mainly a list of things we will never do, including buy a house in the suburbs, take ballet, use the phrase "Oh No You Didn't" and watch a Sandra Bullock movie.

As important as those rules are, none of them hold a candle to the Mac-daddy of all rules that are true and holy in the Man's Hippocratic Oath:

Never own a minivan.

It's so sacred of a rule, that we bold it. We underline it. We give it it's own paragraph. We also spell check it. Even in Catholic school we learned that though Judas betrayed Jesus and sold him to Roman authorities, Jesus forgave him because he knew Judas would never be caught dead in a minivan. So, as you can see, it's pretty serious.

There are many repercussions for buying a minivan. First, you will be stripped of your man identification card. Immediately. Your friends—who remember the day you took your oath—will treat you as if you've contracted some fast-spreading, contagious disease, and will avoid sitting at the same softball field as you. You will also become an instant target for Zima jokes.

It's a cruel world we live in.

Now I'm not going to be naïve and think that all Dudes will be able to stay true to the Man's Hippocratic Oath, especially Dudes who become Dads. In fact, I must confess that, after endless debates, fights and one hotly contested rock-paper-scissors match with my wife, I, Brian A. Klems, have caved and am now the pathetic proud owner of a minvan.

Here's my man identification card. Have fun setting it on fire.

But I'm not here to talk about me. I'm here to help prepare the millions of other Dads who will inevitably fall victim (rock) to a wife who wants a minivan (paper), and explain to them the 9 stages that all Dads go through when buying a minivan. Each stage is real and must be taken seriously. I've included examples to help you understand what to expect. Just by reading on, you will be able to handle the transition better than most. Without further ado, I present to you the 9 Stages that Dads Go Through When Buying a Minivan:

1. Denial.
"I don't care what my wife says, we aren't getting a minivan. I know that the previous five Google searches on my computer were 'How to buy a minivan,' 'Where to buy a minivan,' 'When to buy a minivan,' 'How much does a minivan cost,' and 'Minivan Minivan Minivan,' but that's just a coincidence."

2. Uncontrollable Weeping.

3. Lying.
"I think minivans are pretty sweet. Way better than your Ford Mustang and your Dodge Viper. In fact, I once read that chicks dig guys who drive minivans. Seriously. Wait, why are you laughing?"

4. Bargaining.
"OK wife, if we get the minivan, I'm buying a motorcycle! No? Well, I'm buying a TV the size of our house! No to that too? Hmm…well, I'm only going to shower three times a week. And fart louder."

5. Depression.
"What happened to me? I used to be cool. I used to party, wear awesome concert t-shirts and hurl myself at others in mosh pits, leaving welts on my hip the size of Montana! Now what am I going to have to brag about? Sore knees from having to step up so high to get in the car?"

6. Hysteria
"I can't be seen around town in this behemoth. What will others think? I know exactly what they'll think: What a Loser! Wonder if it'd help if I painted it to look like The Mystery Machine?"

7. Commiserating.
"So you own a minivan too, eh? Nice to find someone else to talk to about it. How have you survived … What's that? Can't talk? On your way to the store to get your wife tampons? Well that's just excellent …"

8. Overcompensating.
"Hey wife, I bought us tickets to the Motley Crüe, Metallica and Lynard Skynard concert. Plus I found my old chain wallet and "UP YOURS!" t-shirt with the middle finger on it—and they still (sort of) fit! Also, and this is just something I'm toying with, what's you gut reaction to neck tattoos?"

9. Acceptance.
"Man, these automatic doors and this massive cargo space are awesome! Plus, the kids' feet no longer reach the back of my chair. Maybe I miss-judged this thing. In fact, I love it! Let's celebrate. Wife, go grab me a Zima!"

The Life of Dad is updated every other Friday (barring the call of family duties). Thanks for stopping by and following my attempts to be a good dad, husband and co-ed softball player. I hope you visit again. -- Brian


Ben said...

Awesome. I am definitely in stage nine--I caught myself telling others last week that it is the best vehicle I have ever owned (and it is).

Tom said...

Sadly, I went through all of those stages almost 2 years ago when we got our Minivan. I went so far as to try and convince her to buy a Navigator (same number of seats/room etc) even though it cost way more and had 1/2 the gas mileage just to fight it longer...

In the end, I lost, and the Town & Country sits in the garage with my man card on the floor under the driver side front wheel.

Wise One said...

I'm sorry for your loss... (It was my Fiancee's gain though)

Kevin Cenna said...

At least you're not going from a Mustang to a minivan. I'm holding off for as long as possible on that one.

Terri Boes said...

We have been through two minivans. (well, technically only one of them was a mini van. We had two Ford Aerostar vans. One was the extended version and was white. After we traded in the blue one for a Subaru Forester we named the white van Moby Dick since it really was a whale of a vehicle compared to the Forester) Now we only have the Forester and my husband misses the vans because he likes to haul all kinds of camping gear and other crap (he's an assistant Boy scout master.) He still can't accept that the Forester is a passenger vehicle and a small one at that. He recently broke the windshield by trying to force a flag pole into the car.
You can go back to the man car after the kids have grown up and left home. You don't really want them driving your mustang when they're learning to drive do you?

ShannanB said...

Wow.... A mini-van? Bless your heart...

Unknown said...

...and I'll be getting another once this one dies.

It is the single most utilitarian vehicle I've owned that comes in under 6000 lbs.

Christine M. Den Herder said...

So what you're telling me is, I should throw scissors in our rock-paper-scissors match?

Anonymous said...

Protip: When your wife sends you to get tampons, buy a *few* boxes and only give her one. Hide the others. The next time you're sent to do this unmanly task, go to the bar and enjoy a beer or two, and then return with another of the pre-purchased boxes of tampons!

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Buy MCA Leads said...

The process of buying a minivan can be quite a journey, especially for dads. From initial resistance to acceptance, dads go through nine stages before embracing the practicality of a minivan.

Samuel Moris said...

🚗Both are relatable and funny. I laughed out loud reading your blog piece about the "9 Stages Dads Go Through When Buying a Minivan." It's an emotional rollercoaster that goes from denial to eventual acceptance. I appreciate how you were able to capture the trip in such a humorous and relatable way. Thanks for the funny and relatable read, which made me nod in agreement. #DadLife

Ken Miles said...

This article had me chuckling at the relatable stages dads navigate when considering a minivan. Brilliantly captured! The mention of teething tubes adds a heartwarming touch, showcasing the multifaceted journey of fatherhood.